and anti-Semitic articles advocating the persecution of Jews pressed on this motion appeared. Not unimportantly, the first anti-Semitic article appeared in Szekely Nep on July 19, 1941, less than a month after Hungary joined the Axis. And even before December, 1941 when Hungary and the United States were in a state of war, Szekely Nep was publishing anti-American articles.
Anti-American articles published on defendant's watch vilified President Roosevelt; blamed Roosevelt, Prime Minister Winston Churchill, and American Jews for the outbreak and extension of the war; claimed that various American leaders, including Roosevelt, were Jewish and, therefore, untrustworthy; and attacked Roosevelt as being under the influence of his administration's "Jewish-blood members" (Gov't. Exh. 14-0, 14-DD, 14-GG, 14-P, 14-JJO.
The anti-Semitic articles were particularly virulent. The "alien-character" of the Jews was emphasized and Jews were described as constituting a separate and distinct race; Jews were portrayed as "traitorous, unscrupulous, cheating . . . throughout . . . Hungarian history" and a consistently dangerous element in Hungarian society responsible for the socioeconomic problems afflicting Hungary and the world; a portion of an article from the National Socialist German Workers Party publication was reprinted describing Jews as an "alien body", charging that "every Jew earns ten times more money than the average Hungarian", and concluding that "de-jewification of Hungarian life is demanded [even] by responsible elements within the government" and "everyone in Hungary is aware of the fact that a final solution may be achieved only by deporting Jewish elements"; Jews were described as "alien elements with diabolical skills" and as a "motley group of immigrants"; and, in the impoverished and poorly educated region which Szekely Nep reached, more than forty articles published while defendant was present blamed the Jews for the economic and social problems and the misery of the people in that region, reminded the readers of violations by individual Jews of the anti-Semitic legislation passed in 1938, 1939, and 1940, and called for harsher restrictions and punishments, including the suggestion that the homes of Jews be taken away. (See, e.g., Gov't. Exh. 14-A, 14-I, 14-F, 14-Q, 14-W, 14-Z, 14-BB, 14-UU, 14-AAA). One article entitled "Defaming the Race" condemned an affair between a Christian woman and a Jewish man, and others condemned the "defamation of the race" to which Christian female domestic employees would be exposed by their Jewish masters, urging that Christians employ these women "so that these flowers of the Szekely pine forests may courageously say at last: 'Never again will we go to Jewish homes to serve'". Gov't. Exh. 14-FF, 14-HH, 14-LL. Those few articles referenced above were but the tip of the very dangerous and very extensive iceberg which, on defendant's watch, surfaced and remained out there for all to see, conditioning the Hungarian people in that region to accept Hungary's efficient persecution of Jews in all aspects of their lives.
But, says defendant, whatever may have appeared in Szekely Nep while he was Responsible Editor, he did not "actively participate" in an act of oppression against persecuted civilians; rather, passive accommodation was the extent of his involvement -- he was, in his word, a mere "figurehead". Parenthetically, he concedes that anti-Semitic articles were published at times he was admittedly present at the paper and does not argue that he was ignorant of what was going on; indeed, implicit in his argument that he passively accommodated the persecutors is a concession that he knew what he was accommodating. And if those articles published during his watch are evidence of the "moderate centrist tone" this supposed "figurehead" somewhat inconsistently alleges he ensured (Def. Br. at 46), this court will eat its hat.
The case on which defendant relies, United States v. Sprogis, 763 F.2d 115 (2d Cir. 1985), is not only not the mother lode defendant would have it be but the proposition for which it is cited by defendant has not been followed even in its own circuit. During World War II, Elmars Sprogis was a police officer in two Latvian towns -- a puppet, performing, the court found, only "occasional ministerial tasks" for the Nazis, acts which could not be considered "active" "assistance in persecution".
. . . Sprogis seems only to have passively accommodated the Nazis, while performing occasional ministerial tasks which his office demanded, but which by themselves cannot be considered oppressive . . . Sprogis' passive accommodation of the Nazis . . . does not, in our view, exclude him from citizenship under the DPA. To hold otherwise would require the condemnation as persecutors of all those who, with virtually no alternative, performed routine law enforcement functions during Nazi occupation. Id. at 122-123.
The court, therefore, excused acts which may well have been persecutional but were performed under something akin to duress -- Sprogis had "virtually no alternative".
Defendant does not suggest that he had had no alternative or acted under duress when he obtained the license for Szekely Nep as its Responsible Editor and proceeded thereafter to publish the paper admittedly knowing what the government wanted and to the government's apparent satisfaction nor, of course, does he suggest that "occasional ministerial tasks" were the extent of his involvement, be it voluntary or involuntary. Any suggestion that he had "virtually no alternative" would be unavailing, in any event, under Fedorenko v. United States, supra, the case which established the standard for cases involving denaturalization and/or deportation on the ground of assistance in persecution. Fedorenko made quite clear that the plain language of the DPA (and, by analogy, the IRO Constitution) mandates that in connection with the persecution provision, it is the objective determination of what one had actually done that is determinative of whether he or she was eligible for a visa and that whether those acts were undertaken voluntarily or involuntarily was not relevant. In finding that Sprogis acted involuntarily, therefore, and thereafter according that fact determinative significance, the Sprogis court adopted a voluntariness element in direct contravention of Fedorenko, perhaps one reason why Sprogis has not been followed.
A mere two years later, the same circuit -- the Second -- decided the case on which the United States relies although, unlike defendant, who has "virtually no alternative", the United States cites other cases as well. The court in United States v. Sokolov, 814 F.2d 864 (2d Cir. 1987), cert. denied, 486 U.S. 1005, 100 L. Ed. 2d 193, 108 S. Ct. 1728 (1988), affirmed the denaturalization of Vladimir Sokolov, a Russian living in the German-occupied Soviet Union, who worked voluntarily as a writer for and later also as deputy chief editor of the Russian language newspaper Rech, published by the German army. Writing under a pseudonym,
Sokolov wrote anti-Semitic articles urging the Soviet population to support anti-Jewish/Bolshevik actions taken by the Nazis, and articles criticizing the United States and Great Britain and seeking to aid in their military defeat. In addition, as deputy chief editor of Rech, Sokolov edited articles with these same themes.